Off The Cuff Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 | Stunning | Should be $150++
Off The Cuff Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 pours a deep purple. With aromas of black raspberry, red currant, black cherry, oak moss, and pie spice. While, medium-full on the palate, with supple tannins and concentrated blackberry and blueberry flavor. And finishing with a hint of clove and toast.
Many bottles from the 40-acre vineyard that called us up with a one-time offer go for around $285, earning 99- and 97-point scores from Robert Parker. This is a whopper of a Napa Cabernet, beautifully chiseled and darkly concentrated. Plus a cashmere texture, with suave tannins coursing to a long, firm finish.
Second Release – Top Under-40 Winemaker
When we tasted the sample, glistening purple to the edge in our glass, it was clear this was great. This is plush and juicy in all the right places. It’s the kind of Napa Cabernet we want to pour with every course. And at this price for fruit that goes into wine that costs many times more, it’s a deal not to miss.
The guy behind this debut release is one of our top under-40 winemakers in Napa, a soil-whisperer in the vein of Stéphane Derenoncourt or Philippe Melka. He has a geologist’s knowledge and an artist’s touch with everything from mountain volcanic rock to silty, sandy loam. Through connections to top estates, he’s handled some of the most exquisite blue-chip Cabernet fruit around, including from Beckstoffer and Pritchard Hill. But one Rutherford plot had remained tantalizingly out of reach—a White Whale he could somehow never lay a finger on.
Rutherford Richness | A ‘must-buy’
So, for a soil nerd like him, this plot epitomized the famous Rutherford dust quality. Yet, in the heart of Napa, the vines’ roots were sunk deep into well-draining loam interspersed with gravel. A sun-soaked microclimate led to drawn-out hang time, and this bottle’s seductively fine, almost powdery tannins, evoking the appellation’s famous tasting note. Run by a single family since the early 60s, the owners have always been selective with who they sold to. And they were never, ever short on demand.